There are many grand guest rooms in Raleigh’s Heights House Hotel—nine to be exact. But, of all of them, Historic Suite No. 3, also known as the Honeymoon Suite, is the grandest. It was designed to be that way.
The 10,000-square-foot boutique hotel, formerly known as the historic Montfort Hall mansion, opened this spring following a renovation by wife and husband pair Sarah and Jeff Shepherd. Restoring the historic Boylan Heights property—an Italianate mansion built in 1858—was a labor of love. Now, the mansion, a National Historic Landmark, has taken on a bustling next life as a hotel. For couples looking to make a weekend out of their wedding, it also serves as an unforgettable getaway experience.
Heights House Hotel sleeps up to 20 people, in addition to offering venue space for a rehearsal dinner, bridal luncheon, ceremony, after-party, and other nuptial events. Couples can book the hotel for the entire weekend, a setup that allows them time to indulge in the luxuries the spa-like Honeymoon Suite has to offer.
The room, a vision realized by the local designer Bryan Costello, is split into connected spaces divided by a pocket door. One room is the sleeping quarters, with a king-sized bed, small bathroom, and TV. The other offers the kind of pre-wedding space that brides dream of.
A clawfoot tub and shower are exposed to the entire room. Sofas and soft chairs offer opportunities for lounging and leisurely pre-wedding primping with stylists, family, and friends.
In the only cool-toned room in the house, soft greens, grays, and blues against a warm wood floor make the space feel particularly calming and peaceful, a comforting quality for any jittery brides. Natural light floods the space through two arched windows that look out onto the property’s meticulously manicured grounds.
“One of the features I love most about the room is the vintage, early-1900s French mirror that is close to nine feet tall. [It’s] beautiful for photos,” Costello explains. “On the spa side, the windows are fogged on the lower portions for privacy but you have natural light coming into the space all day long.”
Then, once the party is over, it’s like flipping a switch for couples to share their first wedded night together, Costello says.
“It is just for those beautiful, private moments,” he says. “An actual honeymoon suite for the couple, with that clawfoot tub and some really luxe finishes, including Moroccan tile and some vintage pieces.”
Heights House accommodates one wedding per weekend, according to its website, with a guest capacity of 149; all nine guest rooms must be booked for two nights. There’s around 1,500 square feet of common area space and all but one of the historic suites have original fireplaces.
“It is your house for the weekend and that’s what sets it apart,” Costello says. “Move in for a couple days, nest for a while, and enjoy the full experience.”
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